The Cougar Chronicle

CSUSM students learn what it means to be “femme”

Alexis+VanPelt+and+Natalie+De+La+Rosa++get+to+know+each+other+as+they+paint+their+nails+in+the+Gender+Equity+Center+on+August+30.
Alexis VanPelt and Natalie De La Rosa  get to know each other as they paint their nails in the Gender Equity Center on August 30.

Alexis VanPelt and Natalie De La Rosa get to know each other as they paint their nails in the Gender Equity Center on August 30.

Abby Costelow

Abby Costelow

Alexis VanPelt and Natalie De La Rosa get to know each other as they paint their nails in the Gender Equity Center on August 30.

Annelisa Zamora, A&E Editor

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The Gender Equity Center (GEC) kicked off the new semester with Femme Fest in hopes to educate and entertain. The primary focus of the small celebration was the history and evolution of the term “femme.”

“Femme” was originally used to describe the physical appearance of lesbian women who dressed in a traditionally feminine way rather than the expected “masc” or “butch” way of dressing. As the years went on, the term came to be more inclusive. Now it is used not just by lesbian women but by the queer and transgender community alike.

As students entered the center, they were encouraged to answer a few questions posted on the wall. Questions like “What words identify you?” and “Do you agree with the broadening definition of ‘femme’?” were asked and the poster boards quickly filled up with responses. Free food, movies and a nail polish station kept the attendees busy after the brief history lesson and sharing of answers.

GEC Peer Educator, Edmarie Billosillo, said “the turnout was more than I expected. I think it may have been because of the meatballs, or because we were streaming Mamma Mia! but I was glad to see the GEC buzzing with people.”

Billosillo also added that “throughout the year, the GEC will be hosting events surrounding a variety of topics, including masculinity, feminism, and health and wellness. Most importantly, though, we at the GEC are hoping to create a space that can be a ‘home away from home’ for students.”

The GEC is located in USU 3200 and can be found on instagram: @csusm.gec

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